Its about my thoughts feelings on just about everything, from Advertising to Zoology ..ok haven't gotten that far yet

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

South Dublin Property Market - how it has changed over the years

Over the last 10 years the landscape of South Dublin has changed completely, from the redevelopment of Sandyford Industrial Estate from mainly Industrial to now a living and leisure area. Dundrum Village, once a quaint area mainly to live with its leafy roads and mature housing estates is now a major shopping district and entertainment place.

With Sandyford Industrial Estate, the changes there are so dramatic. Once it was the home of mainly small to medium warehouse's and industrial units, to now a major hub of International business with many large European headquarters of large multi-national companies (Microsoft). There now is several hotels, a hospital, cinema, shopping centre, Luas, and now their are thousands of high quality apartments for the local workforce.

With Vincent Finnegan Ltd the experts of local knowledge of the property market in South Dublin, Dundrum, Rathfarnham and beyond they have seen all the changes. There are very few estate agents with the knowledge of a local area that have been living and working there. Most of the competition are the large nationals who have come in (and since the property down turn left or leaving) because they did not truly understand the local market and were just "shifting boxes". Where as Vincent Finnegan have been in operation for many years providing the very best service to their clients. In many cases the company sold the home to their clients and then their sons and daughters came back to them to help with their housing needs. You will not find a better Estate Agent in South Dublin to help and assist you with your property requirements, be it sales or letting in residential or commercial property in South Dublin.

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Thursday, September 24, 2009

Protecting your income from redundancy

Redundancy Protection is the new buzz word from the financial services industry brought out to help protect our future income incase we loose our jobs!

Now in this current climate this may be not a bad thing (for once from those guys) this kind of financial package is well worth it. Ok I do have a vested interest in that my Internet Development company in Ireland developed the site it is still well worth it. Because at the moment with so many people loosing their jobs this is becoming critical as with modern living people are max'd out on their savings and living on the edge with bulging debt all thanks to the financial institutions pushing us to borrow more and more.

If some one looses there job tomorrow they may be lucky and have some savings to tied them over till they find a new job, but in this market now the length of time it takes can exceed 6 months and at a lower rate of pay. In the meantime the living costs have not gone away. At least this will make things that bit easier to get by. The maximum cover they will pay out is €2,000 per month but for a normal sized family, that will atleast cover the monthly grocery expenses and general running costs of the home.

As they say on the site Redundancy Protection, it does it exactly what it says on the tin!!!

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Sunday, February 08, 2009

Irish Government announces national insulation programme for economic recovery

The Irish Governement today 8th February 2009, announced a new €100 million investment program to assist home owners to increase the energy efficiency of their homes through insulation.

Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Eamon Ryan and Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government John Gormley today launched the national insulation programme for economic recovery. The three-strand insulation programme will cut heating bills for householders, reduce carbon emissions and create thousands of jobs both directly and indirectly over the course of 2009.

Announcing the investment Energy Minister Eamon Ryan said, “This programme will provide a welcome boost to the economy. Central to Government spending in sustainable energy is to get the economy back on track. We need to replace the spending and lending that has contracted and re-focus our public and private investment.

Insulation makes homes warmer and more comfortable. Householders can expect to have their heating bills with reductions of €700 per annum. This means more money in their pockets. Construction workers will benefit from the thousands of jobs these measures we create. These will be jobs for trades-people throughout the country.

In our current economic climate we need direction and radical thinking. This insulation programme saves energy, saves money and creates jobs. This is what our people, our homes and our economy need at this time”

This is an excellent program, infact I was thinking about getting further insulation in my home this year, but was worried as I work for myself that the money put in would take several years to pay for itself. And with the current economic conditions and the "fear" (I am not too worried but...) that money will be a bit slower in collecting this year any investment with several years of return is more risky. But with this new initative it is now a no brainer for me and hopefully I will qualify, then its straight to BER Ratings company Ber Necessties for my BER Assesment. Hopefully I will score enough to get a reasonable grant. >:¬}

It will also help reduce my monthly heating bill which is now over €200 per month during winter thanks to the Mad gas prices.. Ok I would say a lot of these grants are been funded by the extra monies the Irish Government has taken in from the fuel pumps these last few months now that the price per barrell has reduced to something akin to what it was almost 4 years ago but the price at the pump is almost 60% that what it was then... but thats just the cynical part of me thinking that. Atleast they are givining it back in some form. So this kind of taxation I do not mind.

The programme will consist of a number of grant schemes:

The Home Energy Saving Scheme (private middle income homes) - €50 million

Warmer Homes Scheme and Local Authority housing (low income private homes and rented local authority housing) - €50 million

Grants to support a range of improvements will be available.

The Home Energy Saving Scheme (middle income private homes):

Application process:

  • It is expected that the scheme will open for homeowner applications in March 2009. At that time, applications can be made through Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI), online at or by post on forms which will be available on request by ringing 1890 927 000.
  • SEI are now accepting expressions of interest in participating in the scheme. Homeowners who have expressed an interest in the scheme will be advised when the formal application process is available.
  • After registering with SEI, homeowners can immediately arrange for a BER assessment to be carried out, if they wish, without awaiting from grant approval. However, the grant for the BER will only be payable after upgrade measures and follow up BER are completed. Applicants must complete the formal application form and await written grant approval before having upgrade measures carried out.


  • The scheme is aimed at older houses that would not typically have the energy efficiency features of recently built homes. The scheme is open to all houses built prior to 2006. Houses built from 2006 onwards should be built to the Building Regulations 2002 standard, which specifies high quality insulation and heating controls


The objectives of the Home Energy Saving Scheme are:

(1) To reduce energy use and CO2 emissions from the existing housing stock, and

(2) To support the development of the energy services industry in Ireland.

Eligible measures:

The table below sets out:

· the eligible measures and the set grant amounts available.

· the typical improvement in BER rating that could be expected from each individual measure, done in isolation. Note that in estimating the total potential BER improvement, if the full range of measures is installed, the potential BER improvements for each measure should not be added together.

· the typical payback period for each measure, arising from energy saved.


Grant rate

Typical net BER improvement

Typical payback (years)

Roof Insulation




Cavity Wall Insulation




Internal Wall Insulation




External Wall Insulation




High efficiency boiler plus heating control upgrade




Heating control upgrade only


15 -25%


Building Energy Rating


Minimum investment:

  • A minimum level of investment is required of householders to participate in the scheme. Householders must avail of measures (excluding BER) involving a minimum grant payment of €500 for a first application. This means that householders cannot avail of a grant for roof insulation or cavity wall insulation only. These low cost measures must be undertaken together or with another measure.

Heating controls and boilers

  • To avail of the €500 grant for heating controls, a homeowner must install a range of time, temperature and zone controls on their heating system and electric immersion water cylinder. This low cost measure can improve a home’s BER rating by up to 25%, yet has a payback of only 4 to 5 years.
  • While heating controls can be added to an existing heating system, it is particularly attractive to any homeowner replacing their boiler to also install heating controls at that time. Under the Building Regulations 2008, anybody replacing an existing oil or gas boiler must install a condensing boiler with a minimum seasonal efficiency of 86%. Condensing boilers with an efficiency of up to 95% are available on the market. This additional efficiency can lead to significant savings. A grant of €200 towards the cost of these higher efficiency boilers is available to any homeowner who is also installing heating controls.

Wall insulation options

  • To insulate the walls of their home, owners may have a choice of cavity wall, internal or external insulation, depending on the construction of their home. Homeowners should seek professional advice on which option is most suitable for their home.
  • Where a house has a suitable cavity, then cavity wall insulation is the most economical investment. Where this is not possible the options are either internal dry lining or external insulation. Internal dry lining, while considerably less expensive than external insulation, will ultimately reduce somewhat the internal habitable space of the home and may not be practical where there is decorative internal plasterwork. External wall insulation may prove preferable where a significant upgrade to the external facade is already envisaged. Both may result in additional works in order to reinstate electrical, plumbing and glazing fixtures.

Building Energy Rating

  • A BER assessment is not required for participation in the scheme. However, a BER carried out prior to works can provide useful advice to a homeowner on the upgrade measures he or she needs to take to improve the home’s energy efficiency. A BER conducted after the measures are finished can establish the impact of the works and give the homeowner comfort regarding their investment.
  • To avail of the BER grant of €200, a homeowner must have a BER assessment conducted before and after works. Anybody wishing to secure the services of a registered BER assessor can find details at Homeowners should shop around for the best price.


  • SEI will be registering contractors for participation in the scheme on the basis of commitments to a range of Terms and Conditions, including specified competence and experience requirements, as well as specified tax and insurance criteria. Contractors should contact SEI on 1850-927000 or at for further details and to receive application forms. Alternatively, log onto

The Warmer Homes Scheme (low income or for those on a social welfare allowance):

The Warmer Homes Scheme is part of the Low Income Housing Programme, administered by SEI. The Scheme was introduced in 2002 and provides funding, through community based organisations, to those on low income for the installation of energy efficiency measures in their homes. Already, up to 9,750 energy efficiency improvements have been made including upgrading the fabric of the building with attic insulation, cavity wall insulation, draught proofing the home and provision of lagging jackets. Homes that receive the full suite of available measures under the current scheme will have the potential to achieve energy savings of up to 50%.

There are currently twenty community based organisations involved in the Scheme. All homes will receive a “Keep Well, Keep Warm” booklet shortly and a website will be available. Applicants should see for further detail on how to apply to community groups involved.

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Sunday, June 15, 2008

Petrol Service Stations been misleading in their pricing

Over the years the price of Oil/GAS/diesel/Petrol has fluctuated greatly and when it was in the .50-.70cents per litre people did not complain nor notice much. But the pricing in the stations was never shown as .50 or .60 but more like 050.9 9 with the 9 been very small.

Now when I go to fill up my tank what used to be every 2 weeks, it is now almost every week. The price is €1.42.9. What the hell is the extra .9 Why can't they be honest and say its €1.43. Instead they know that when we drive up to the station we only see in the very big sign €1.42 and the .9 is small and we do not notice it or register the extra almost extra cent per litre. With over petrol stations in Ireland and the average of 18,000 litres of petrol and diesel per week that equals an additional hidden revenue of €9,199,008 (average of 18,000 litres x 52 x 1,092 stations). Hell place this money directly into research in our universities per year and we may see some results.

An excellent site for pricing across Ireland is

Some previous posts on this topic:
The Price of Oil going to cause the next Global Recession
Use Sunlight to Make Fuel From CO2

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Monday, June 02, 2008

Use Sunlight to Make Fuel From CO2

Scientists from Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico discovered a way to utilise the power of sunlight to produce methanol and or gasoline (petrol). Now I must say at first glance this is exciting but unfortunately if they discover a way to perfect this then this could assist in reducing the overal global contribution of large power plants and general industry to the Global Warming contribution with their outputs.

Maybe if Governments were not so short sighted they could force the oil companies to contribute some of their massive new profits to invest in this and a few other Carbon Scrubbing technologies. Sunlight to Petrol method they claim that it
reverses the combustion process, recovering the building blocks of hydrocarbons. "This is about closing the cycle," said Ellen Stechel, manager of Sandia's Fuels and Energy Transitions department. "Right now our fossil fuels are emitting CO2. This would help us manage and reduce our emissions and put us on the path to a carbon-neutral energy system."

The prototype device, called the Counter Rotating Ring Receiver Reactor Recuperator (CR5, for short), will break a carbon-oxygen bond in the carbon dioxide to form carbon monoxide and oxygen in two distinct steps. It is a major piece of an approach to converting carbon dioxide into fuel from sunlight.

“Our overall objective with this prototype is to demonstrate the practicality of the CR5 concept and to determine how test results from small-scale testing can be expanded to work in real devices,” Miller says. “The design is conservative compared to what might eventually be developed.”

But then if you can imagine that every C02 producing power plant had one of these connected, then it could completely close the loop with not only stop the pumping of more C02 into the environment, but lengthen the time we have with fossil fuels. This could be a win win situation.

Scientists Use Sunlight to Make Fuel From CO2

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Sunday, June 01, 2008

The Price of Oil going to cause the next Global Recession.

The Price of Oil and how it is going to cause the next Global Recession, but there is something we can do about it!

I just received this in my email, and I must say its brilliant. Usually I just delete the chain mails, but I got this through Digg (now spammers please don't use this method) and I must say its simple and ingenious, and I for one am going to follow this though in Ireland. Rabbit About: Forums - Petrol Prices - I know this has been going around for a while, but.....

The price of Oil, Petrol, Gas what ever you call it has gone through the roof and its something that really frustrates me on how much like cattle we are to the GREED of the oil industry, they stumbled upon a way on how to easily make massive profits on fear.

The first big hike in prices was the invasion of Afghanistan and then it went up a few cents, to almost $50 (US) wow it was expensive, then it was the fear that the Oil would stop flowing after Iraq, well it didn't but the prices stayed high at over $70-80 a barrel. And the Oil experts were saying that the prices here to stay because of the constant fear of the Middle East exploding.. hell when has it not been in fear of this. But I think then the industry as a whole had an Eureka moment!

They then realised that just the fear of something happening in a local event will make the pricing crazy with almost double percentage growth change in the price in a few short days.. It was the storm in the Gulf of Mexico that pushed prices above $85 (not too sure of the prices at the time but I think its accurate). Now the Gulf only produces not even 10% of the Oil Production in the US, which equates to not even 2% of world production. The storms were going to effect the production for a few days maybe even weeks. But now all of a sudden it made a big difference on the Global Market, forgetting the fact that if the production was seriously effected the US Oil reserve would have taken up the slack and the Federal Government could have made the companies step up production to shore up the short fall when the storms abated. Forgetting the fact that previous years there were storms and it did not make much of a difference in the price.

We have been conditioned by fear to accept these prices, as a part of life, but what has been forgotten is that production costs have not increased by 300% in the last few years. But the cost to the consumer has. Another big jump was the scare of Russia has or is about to pass the Peak Production cycle. Bam! another jump in prices on the global stage. Forget the fact that the US passed theirs in the 70's at the same time there was a ARAB OIL PRODUCTION EMBARGO! Which means they were not selling theirs to the west at all. There were massive fuel shortages all over the world, ques at pumps for miles and I remember my father filling up several gallon tanks at a time and leaving them at the bottom of the garden because he and no one new when they were able to get oil again... NOW THAT WAS FEAR, REAL AND JUSTIFIED. Then the price of Oil increased from about $5 to about $9 in two years. But there was a real shortage then the price increases were justified as there was scarcity of supply. More Pricing here.

The ironic thing was when Opec discovered the new pricing model they discovered not only new world power but how much more money they could make.

We are going to face a world where Oil will become more scarce, and yes I do strongly believe that we should seriously look at decreasing our dependency in Oil and its by products which are just huge, from our tooth brush to beauty products. I would much rather the actual increases be levied on us not by the oil industry but by our Governments who pocket the lions share of the increase and they say and allocate all of this money into research into Alternative fuels and new sources of Energy, hell even go to the Moon to mine for Helium-3 (have a nice post in draft on this).

But no the vast majority of these profits are going to the Oil industry and lining their pockets with even greater funds. The price of Oil has been the single largest contributor to the current state of the Global Economy. With more money and wealth transferred from the Middle and Working classes because the cost of the every day items increasing dramatically directly in the cost of just getting the goods to the store, then from actually getting to the store to buy them through to the actual cost of the raw materials themselves (plastic industry, paint some foodstuffs etc).

Over the last several months we have seen food riots across the world because of price increases now other every day goods are going to start doubling in prices if we do not do something about it... because if we do not we will see a Global Recession with mad inflation and there will be nothing we can do about it.

So please do something and stop this spiral of increase in the price of OIL!

So why not teach the industry a lesson and actually search out the cheapest supplier of Oil/Gas/Petrol you can find and keep on going to them and Prove to these Greed infested monsters that we the little people can actually make a difference!

The statement below is from Energy Information Administration
Do consumers impact gasoline prices?
Consumers have very little power as individuals but, if enough consumers give the same “market signal,” they can impact prices. First, when consumers buy gasoline at service stations in their areas with the lowest price, they take market share away from higher-priced stations; these stations may then eventually reduce their prices to be more competitive. The second way consumers impact the market is by reducing gasoline consumption. If enough people reduce driving or switch to more energy-efficient vehicles, gasoline demand would decline and prices would be dampened.

Visit RabbitAbout this Snip taken from them..
I am sending this note to a lot of people. If each of you send it to at least ten more (30 x 10 = 300)... and those 300 send it to at least ten more (300 x 10 = 3,000) ... and so on, by the time the message reaches the sixth generation of people, we will have reached over THREE MILLION consumers! If those three million get excited and pass this on to ten friends each, then 30 million people will have been contacted! If it goes one level further, you guessed it... ..


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Saturday, April 12, 2008


Skeptics claiming that Man Made Climate change is nothing but a puff of smoke (all be it carbon ridden smoke >:¬} ) have been delt a blow this week with research published ealier this month from the Institute of Physics.

The research published on Thursday 3rd April states (in was to refute the Channel 4 - UK) piece called "The Great Global Warming Swindle", broadcast in 2007, suggested that global warming is due to a decrease in cosmic rays over the last hundred years.

The new research shows that change in cloud cover over the Earth does not correlate to changes in cosmic ray intensity. Neither does it show increases and decreases during the sporadic bursts and decreases in the cosmic ray intensity which occur regularly.

Now I am infact a proponent of Global Warming is happening but it is also caused by a huge range of events, from Man Made, Cylical, Decrease in Magnetosphere etc. But I do think that while most politicians are now claiming that there is a problem, they are still doing nothing or atleast very little about it. There are many things we can do to atleast reduce the affect of the Man Made elements, and at the same time lead mankind to a better healther future. But most politicians are looking for the 8 second sound bite and no real concrete planning (environmentally friendly concrete ofcourse).

The one thing I am worried about it is that there could be so much fear mongering that stupid things will be implemented, billions of Euros wasted and nothing much done. But I heard an interesting interview a few weeks back on George Hook with a man who was not disputing Global Warming (will get the refence to it later in a talk back) but was saying that we could do so much more for people now in the very short time with a fraction of the investment and see instant results, whilst at the same time put inplace proper medium planning to help reduce the effects of the possible future clamity which is very hard to stop now.

But what it did do was raise a excellent point in that with politics and media clamouring end of the world and oh woe claims this puts things into context and atleast opens the debate in a planned way and what we can actually do. In otherwords everything should be run through a "Cost Benifits Analysis". Spend 50 billion on neculear power plants and they take 10 - 15 years to build and only start to reduce Carbon productions in 25-50 years (after you take the actual build into consideration) or reduce direct taxation on wages and increase the tax on heavey carbon producing products, yes you are giving to take away, but atleast the general mass's will not suffer in the process too much and there is direct correlation to the increase in tax take to planning and development of proper public transport.
Subsidise fully or almost fully energy saving products for the home, either by grants or through tax breaks. Here again there is direct benifits and instant. House's will cost and use less to heat thus there will be less requirement for power production.

There are a whole host of simple things that can be introduced but are not Sexy so they don't get the chance or airing but they should.

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Friday, December 07, 2007

Irelands Carbon Budget

The Irish Minister for the Environment John Gormley (Green Party) has announced a Carbon Budget today in Dail (Irish Parliament). In essence the policies will be:

Every Government initiative will "carbon-proofed" prior to instigation.
Their is new Motor Taxation on cars that will charge owners of larger cars by the following:
Motor tax rates will be graduated as one moves up the CO2 bands.

* Band A (under 120 grams per km) - €100.
* Band B (121-140 grams per km) - €150.
* Band C (141-155 grams per km) - €290.
* Band D (156-170 grams per km) - €430.
* Band E (171-190 grams per km) - €600.
* Band F (191-225 grams per km) - €1,000.
* Band G, the top band -€2,000, reflecting CO2 emissions of over 225grams per km.

"The clear objective of this new motor tax system is to influence the purchasing decisions of consumers by rewarding the buyers of low-emitting cars and charging a premium on less efficient vehicles," Mr Gormley said.

Also he announced that incandescent bulbs will no longer be sold in Ireland by January 2009.

These are a start, but to be honest with you it is nowhere near enough. I would have expected so much more. If it was me I would have insisted on the following:

Tax Credits to all apartment management companies that install solar and wind powered generation to contribute towards the running of the electric power of the complexes

Issue "fuel stamps" like payments to every householder of €100 to purchase long life bulbs (total cost €146,952,100)

Place 100% environmental Levy on standard bulbs (potential revenue €95,812,769

Nett cost of the last two is a maximum €51,139,330 Saving to the consumer on power (average) €125 per year on electrical charges.

We would also reduce upto 700,000 tonnes in carbon emission production.

But because I am not in power can't do this, but I will make my own representations on this.

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Friday, June 08, 2007

Wireless Electricity

Xinhua - English" BEIJING, June 8 (Xinhuanet) -- Scientists may have signaled an end to electric cords and batteries when they lit a 60-watt light bulb from a power source seven feet away without using a physical connection. The researchers have named their concept "WiTricity" as in "wireless electricity."

MIT physicist Marin Soljacic started thinking years ago about how to transmit power wirelessly so his cell phone could recharge without ever being plugged in. "

Telsa did this almost 80 years ago, glad to see the world is beginning to catch up, needless to say he was also a major advocate and the father of "Zero Point Energy" which would not only solve the energy problem, Global Warming but also my back pocket!

For those who don't know Zero Point Energy is straight out of the quantum world. "In a quantum mechanical system such as the particle in a box or the quantum harmonic oscillator, the lowest possible energy is called the zero-point energy. According to classical physics, the kinetic energy of a particle in a box or the kinetic energy of the harmonic oscillator may be zero if the velocity is zero." Taken from Wikipedia Zero Point
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As an aside I remember I was giving a speech in Istanbul in 1999 for Com 21 cable company to the European Cable Industry. Over several drinks I had a long conversation with a wireless expert and I was saying it was only a matter of decades that we would have wireless power. He refuted it, but I was adamant that I was right, for me it was energy and it was only a matter of when it could be done, one matter stream is the same as another. Ok did not understand the science behind it, but the principle. Just wish now I bet on it >:¬}

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Monday, March 26, 2007

Hidden Resource to fight the Main Cause of Global Warming

I recently was reading my Feb 2007 issue of National Geographic and aside from the other wonderful articles they had an amazing one entitled "Forests of the Tide". In this article it raised, and I must admit I was amazed at this fact. That Mangrove forests are highly effective carbon sinks.. I quote from the National Geographic Article "By measuring photosynthesis, sap flow, and other processes in the leaves of the forest canopy, Ong and his team can tell how much carbon is assimilated into mangrove leaves, how much is stored in living trees, and how much eventually makes its way into nearby waterways. The measurements suggest that mangroves may have the highest net productivity of carbon of any natural ecosystem (about a hundred pounds per acre [45 kilograms per 0.4 hectares] per day) and that as much as a third of this may be exported in the form of organic compounds to mudflats. Mangroves, it seems, are carbon factories, and their demolition robs the marine environment of a vital element.

Ong's team has also shown that a significant portion of the carbon ends up in forest sediments, remaining sequestered there for thousands of years. Conversion of a mangrove forest to a shrimp pond changes a carbon sink into a carbon source, liberating the accumulated carbon back into the atmosphere—but 50 times faster than it was sequestered."

After this I went a little further and started going around the Net to see if there was anything else, especially more on this research and found Prof. Jin Eong Ong's page on this Summary - Prof. Ong The Hidden Costs of Mangrove Destruction. Another quote from this site " 4 June 2002 – Bali, Indonesia – The destruction of mangrove forests in SE Asia, primarily due to digging ponds for shrimp aquaculture and for wood chips for the rayon industry, is releasing as much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year as 1.5 million cars..
Setting aside the obvious value of the Mangrove Forests to assist in correcting the balance at the moment they also provided immense support and protection to the areas that were hit by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, another quote: "Where mangrove forests were intact, they served as natural breakwaters, dissipating the energy of the waves, mitigating property damage, perhaps saving lives. Post-tsunami, the logic of allowing a country's mangrove "bioshields" to be bulldozed looked not just flawed but reprehensible."
Over the coming weeks I want to write some more on Mangroves so if anyone has anything interesting or usefull links please drop me an email or comment.

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Monday, February 26, 2007

Shape my day the Quantum Way

Over the last number of years I have been thinking on the possibilities of the mind, where we have come from, where we are and where we will be in the never ending now!
I have noticed that over the last 20 years (OK its taken me a long time), either I have been more receptive or there has actually been a major increase in group awareness of the power of the "Unified Mind" and what it can achieve.

Ireland and the Celtic Tiger I feel is a classic example of an awaking to the potential. For decades essentially since independence from Britain the Irish had a down beat view of ourselves, we had probably one of the greatest inferiority complex a nation could have. We worked hard outside of Ireland and "dossed" at home. We were always the almost haves, we almost won a medal in the Olympics. We had this sicofantic notion of ourselves that we were held back from our true potential by the BRITS, why it was their fault that we did not... what ever.

The ironic thing about our "sudden" belief in ourselves as a nation of peoples who can achieve things on a global scale, to be peoples who actually matter, to be a country that people want to come to visit on holidays (in their millions) to a country that is now viewed as the land of opportunity for hundreds of thousands of Europeans is actually down to a few BRITS, Jack Charlton, Daniel Day Lewis, Alan Parker to name but a few (ok Jim Sheridan and Roddy Doyle are Dubs and Irish but go with me on this)!

Upto the late 1980's and early 1990's Ireland was a nation of major begrudgers and we were a net exporter of our own People! Then it started with Big Jack and Stuttgard 1988 ENGLAND 0-1 IRELAND all of a sudden we bet them.. we actually bet them in their own beautiful game (OK it was a Scottish guy who scored the goal). Before the game we did not even think it could happen. Our hearts dreamt of the day that we would have a team that would actually bet England, but our heads new we couldn't... sure what the hell were we doing in the European Championships anyway. We won! God I remember the parties that day. Most people can remember where they were that day as well. Hearing the stories from people you would think that most of Ireland was actually there in the Stuttgard. When the boys came back it was to a hero's welcome. Not because we won the European Championships ( we did not.. not even close) but what they did was all of a sudden our hearts desire became a reality ... We bet England in football. This was to become known as "The Stuttgart Effect"! If we could do this we could achieve almost anything. Jack Charlton gave us a belief in ourselves.

In 1989 Jim Sheridan and Daniel Day-Lewis brought home the Oscars and a slue of other awards. My god what was happening, we are beginning to believe in ourselves now.

1990 Italy world cup finals again. This time we are expecting something great. We go there in our tens of thousands essentially to do what we do best and Party. But we also now believe we can win match's! We get to the quarter finals and were robbed by the Italians. In the 1980's and before we would have been depressed, but now hell we had a great time, we loved the journey now lets party. When the boys came back they were cheered on through the streets of Dublin by over 200,000 fans.

We are now a nation of believers we can achieve things. The biggest band in the world, why its an Irish Band, U2. Waterford Crystal becomes one of the most famous desirable brand in the luxury market. Guinness, Baileys Irish Cream, Jameson, these are now world brands and Irish. We are now a nation of potential and we are proud, we brag and hold our shoulders up high. Over the course of the next 10 years we have added many other Brands to the world market, Ryan Air now one of the largest Airlines in the World.

will finish this later....

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